On November 17, 2009 the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) provided new recommendations for the use of mammography as a screening tool for breast cancer. The committee was comprised of both medical and non-medical professionals. The recommendations were based on the examination of scientific evidence regarding the efficacy of this tool for both screening for breast cancer as well as survival once diagnosed with the disease.
The Task Force found when looking at data from the past 20 years that while more women were being diagnosed with breast cancer and more women were being diagnosed with early stage disease, when comparing mortality from breast cancer the data remains unchanged. This means in 2009 we have the same number of people dying of breast cancer as we did in the 1980’s despite more people being screened with mammography. Obviously we have not achieved the important goal of reducing deaths from breast cancer despite our improved technology with mammography and improved use of mammography for screening for breast cancer.
Anytime new recommendations are made with regard to a change in health care practice, concern and fear are likely to arise. After all, there has been a push for mammography screening for early breast cancer detection for the last 20 years. What is important to note is that the recommendations for women who have had breast cancer as well as those who are at risk for developing breast cancer remain unchanged. Annual mammography screening is still recommended for this population. It is also important to note that this is the recommendation of an independent task force. The recommendations by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) American Cancer Society (ACS) and National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) have not changed at this point in time.
The Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation’s position on this recommendation is that women should continue to follow the advice of their health care practitioner. In addition, as we always promote, women should continue to advocate for themselves when it comes to their health care. Miles of Hope is a not for profit foundation providing support services for people residing in the eight counties of the Hudson Valley who have been affected by breast cancer.
Cathy Varunok, Co-Founder, Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation; Occupational Therapist, Dyson Center for Cancer Care, Vassar Brothers Medical Center; St. Francis Hospital
MOH Co-Founder Cathy Varunok, Dazzles Salon Owner Rosemarie Haines, MOH Exec Director Pari Forood
Dazzle’s Salon, Route 9, Fishkill, presents Cathy Varunok, Co-Founder, Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation with a check for $450 which they collected from donations and in-store promotions during October, Breast Cancer Awareness month. They are standing in front of a breast cancer/Miles of Hope display created by the store.
From left to right: Dazzles Salon Stylists: Danny Lowney, Kristiana Tutulli, Flora Saverino, Rosemarie Haines (owner of Dazzles), Dawn Kane, Holly Schneeberger and Michelle Gewat
From left to right: Jennifer Italiano and Shelby Byron from Salon Verve; Miles of Hope Co-Founder Dana Effron
Salon Verve ‘s Jennifer Italiano and Shelby Byron presented Miles of Hope Co-Founder Dana Effron with a check for $1200 from proceeds of the promotion they ran during October, Breast Cancer Awareness month, 2009.
Salon Verve located on Rt. 82 in Hopewell Junction, conducted a cut-a-thon on October 11, and donated all proceeds to Miles of Hope.
Miles of Hope is a non-profit foundation with a mission to fund support services for people affected by breast cancer in the 8 counties of the Hudson Valley.
Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation would like to recognize one of our own heroes, a tireless volunteer and warrior in her fight against breast cancer.
Margaret De Sa passed away on November 1, 2009, with her family by her bedside after a long and arduous battle with breast cancer. We honored her at the Goals for Hope women’s soccer tournament in 2006. Every year, without fail, she worked on the Goals Committee and ran the concession stand at the tournament with her family.
To say we will miss her is a grand understatement.
To say we were touched however briefly by her generosity and kindness and humor would be telling the whole truth, even though it would make Margaret blush with humility.
Left to right: Pari Forood - Exec. Dir. Miles of Hope; Mellissa Junge - Co-Chairman, PWSPSL Tournament; Tina Porter- President, and Co-Chairman PWSPSL Tournament; Cathy Varunok, Co-Founder Miles of Hope; Dana Effron Co-Founder Miles of Hope
The Poughkeepsie Women’s Slow Pitch Softball League October Tournament in honor of the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation raised over $3500 for support programs for people affected by breast cancer in ALL 8 counties of the Hudson Valley.
The tournament, held every year the first weekend in October brings in teams from all over the Hudson Valley to compete.
“We play from the heart for our colleagues, friends and sisters who are affected by breast cancer,” explained Tina Porter, President of the League and Co-Chairman of the Tournament.
“This year we had 20 teams involved and the competition was stiff.” The Bombers of Ulster County won the two day event.
“This is the second year the PWSPSL has run this tournament in our honor and we are so grateful,” Cathy Varunok, Co-Founder of Miles of Hope said. “We emphasize a healthy life style and exercise at Miles of Hope and what could exemplify that more than softball.”
The event was held at the Robinson Lane Fields in Wappingers Falls which were donated by the town.
Miles of Hope sponsors 5 events each year highlighting the benefits of exercise and good health: Hoops for Hope Basketball Tournament, Family Fun Run, Goals for Hope Women’s Soccer Tournament, Community Walk for Breast Cancer, and the Softball Tournament.